Condemnation on Current Schism driven by Western Liberals and Conservatives
It is written that “there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another.” (1 Corinthians 12:25) In the 500th anniversary of Reformation, however, thanks to the westerners, schism within Anglicanism worsen. The Scottish Episcopal Church approves same-sex weddings on 8th June 2017 without considering the impacts on ecumenical relations with other Anglican and Christian churches. The conservatives find an excuse to promote their ministry of schism and send the “missionary bishops” to Scotland and England. On 2 May 2017, Reformed Evangelical Anglican Church of South Africa “consecrated” Rev Jonathan Pryke as the missionary bishop for Britain. On 30 June, Gafcon declared the “consecration” of Rev. Canon Andy Line to be the missionary bishop for Scotland and Europe. On 27 September, the “Christian Episcopal Church” announced the consecration of Rev Gavin Ashden, former Queen’s Chaplain, as the missionary bishop to the UK and Europe. But the so-called “consecration” by Christian Episcopal Church is worse than that by Gafcon. By consecrating a “missionary bishop to the UK and Europe”, Christian Episcopal church is openly insulting the see of the Archbishop of Canterbury, who is the spiritual leader of the Anglican Communion.
One must honour or at least recognise the see of the Archbishop of Canterbury. You can condemn The Most Rev Justin Welby, but as the Archbishop of Canterbury, he is the primate of All England and the apostolic successor of St Augustine of Canterbury. A Christian who rejects the tradition cannot be an Anglican. The Scripture, the Tradition and the Reason are equally important sources of faith in Anglicanism. More importantly, the Church of England does not approve the same sex wedding and the conservative should have no reason to reject the authority of the Archbishop of Canterbury in England.
While rejecting other Anglican bishops’ authorities is still a controversial issue, it may be rightful sometimes. At least the primate of the Scottish Episcopal Church is not the spiritual leader of the entire Anglican Communion; a non-Scottish Episcopalian Anglican has no obligation to recognise the authority of the SEC primate. What’s matter is the reasons behind the rejection of a bishop’s authority. I don’t think the approval of the same sex marriage is a valid reason for schism if the “conservative” parishes can still maintain their own teachings. However, if the bishop and the province collaborate with a corrupted or autocratic government, establishing another Anglican church under the authority of another bishop is inevitable. If the underground Anglican churches in China are not under the authority of the Anglican Church of Korea, they cannot maintain their faith, tradition and episcopal polity at all, as CCP forces all churches to join the “Three-Self Patriotic Movement”, reject the episcopal polity and liturgical tradition and even censor the content of the sermon. HKSKH endorses CCP government and the Three-Self Patriotic Movement and remain silence to the current persecution against Christian in China, so it is reasonable to reject the authority of the pro-China archbishop Paul Kwong, the Primate of HKSKH. But some selfish American “Anglicans” do not send a single missionary bishop to North Korea, mainland China, Hong Kong or Iran for evangelization; they don’t even share gospels to their East Asian immigrant neighbourhood. Instead, they only send missionary bishops to Europe and UK for schism.
The Bible says, “These be they who separate themselves, sensual, having not the Spirit.” (Judas 1:19) “Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.” (Philippians 2:3) In Anglicanism you can always condemn the bishops with reasons. I always condemn Paul Kwong openly. But when it comes to episcopal polity, one must be very careful. Is the consecration of a new bishop and the establishment of a new diocese necessary? Splitting from the established province should be the last resolution, for it is an irreversible decision. But some church politicians only know about church politics. They only want to gain more powers. By blaming the conservative being homophobic and victim playing, the liberals attract more LGBT “refugee” from other denominations. At the same time, the political movement against the same sex marriage enforces the power of the conservative. That’s a typical Mao Zedong’s strategy: unify everyone by finding an external enemy to attack.
This article is neither pro-liberal or pro-conservative; instead, this article condemns both Western parties as non-Christian. None of them cares about the unity and the ecumenical relations to other churches. They only care about politics and they have nothing to do with Christian faith.
P.S. Some anonymous Anglicans say that Christian Episcopal Church has only a small congregation and Gavin Ashden has already been consecrated as bishop “several years ago” when he was still the Queen’s chaplain. If that’s true, I wonder whether it is an American imperialist conspiracy of manipulating the church politics in Britain.